St. Cloud, MN — Kenny Saenz (BYU) picked a good night to have his best start of the year. He gave his Rox a great chance to win, but tonight a masterful outing wasn't enough in the final regular season home game. The Rox fell to the Express 2-0, and remain behind the 8-ball for home field advantage throughout the playoffs with 2 games left. Saenz tied Aaron Rozek's Rox record with 13 strikeouts in a single game in 6 incredible innings.
In a pitcher's duel with Eau Claire's starter, Saenz unfortunately picked up the loss after allowing just 1 run that came in on an infield miscue in the 2nd inning. Shelby Lackey (Pacific) tossed a scoreless 7th inning, and Bobby Gauvreau (Minnesota State-Mankato) closed out the final three innings. The best pitching staff in the Northwoods League gave their offense a great chance to win, but it managed just 5 hits tonight.
Trevor Putzig (Tennessee Tech) doubled on his birthday, and reached 3rd but the Rox couldn't drive in a run in their home finale. Matthew Tarantino (Pacific) was the only Rox player to collect multiple hits on the night. He was honored as the teams MVP before the game thanks to his big efforts for more than 60 games. He leads the team in at-bats, games played and in fielding percentage. He shared the MVP award with Aaron Rozek (Minnesota State-Mankato) who is pitching Monday night for St. Cloud.
The Rox didn't have enough offense, and now look to get back on track with the series shifting to Eau Claire for the weekend. After the weekend, they return home for the 1st round of the Northwoods League Playoffs. 1st pitch will be at 7:05 PM as the Rox look to win a playoff game for the 3rd straight season. Limited tickets are still available to purchase. You can call our Rox box office at 320-240-9798 or go to our website 24 hours a days at stcloudrox.com.
Tonight's Box Score.
Northwoods League Standings.
Friday's St. Cloud Times Player of the Night is Kenny Saenz. Despite getting tagged with a loss, he only gave up 1 run over 6 innings and tied a Rox record with 13 strikeouts.
The St. Cloud Rox are a member of the finest developmental league for elite college baseball players, the Northwoods League. The 23-year-old summer collegiate league is the largest organized baseball league in the world with 20 teams, drawing significantly more fans, in a friendly ballpark experience, than any league of its kind. A valuable training ground for coaches, umpires and front office staff, 180 former Northwoods League players have advanced to Major League Baseball, including two- time Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer (WAS), two-time World Series Champion Ben Zobrist (CHC) and MLB All-Stars Chris Sale (BOS), Jordan Zimmermann (DET), Curtis Granderson (NYM) and Lucas Duda (NYM). All league games are viewable live via the Northwoods League portal. For more information, visit www.stcloudrox.com or download the new Northwoods League Mobile App on the Apple App Store or on Google Play and set the Rox as your favorite team.